Sasha Davies, a living legend in the cheese world, has already made an indelible mark on Portland’s cheese community. Not only does she have a carefully chosen assortment of cheeses for sale at Cyril’s at Clay Pigeon Winery but also an exciting monthly community supported cheese club. With no membership fees or long-term commitment, cheese lovers can buy only when they want.
By the looks of the crowd at the first cheese pickup party, they want to buy over and over again. Considering what a foodie town Portland is, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that these buyers are serious about their cheese. Like attracts like since Davies is a well-known cheesemonger, book author and expert on all things cheese.
To kick off the party, Davies, accompanied by husband Michael Claypool, discussed the specifics of the L’Amuse Gouda cheese and how it was made in collaboration between a cheese shop owner, a farmer and a cheese maker. She explained how the 29-pound cheese wheel had been scored using a special tool. Then showed the many curious cheese fans how to cut through a wheel using a simple piece of wire.
With chunky nibbles of Gouda cheese in hand, guests tasted it paired with both a French red wine and local IPA beer carefully chosen by Davies and Claypool. Fresh bread, a housemade cheese and walnut biscotti and a slightly spicy winter squash soup topped with the cheese proved to be perfect food foils for the lovely L’Amuse.
Another benefit to joining Cyril’s community supported cheese club is that the members vote on the next month’s cheese. Davies described the three choices in eloquent detail as only a cheesemonger can and asked the crowd for a show of hands on which should be the cheese for March. A Swiss farmstead Gruyere-style cheese called Schlossberger, was the clear winner with this group of cheese lovers. At the end of the evening, Cyril’s cheese club members collected their 1-pound allotments of L’Amuse Gouda, most promising to return to next month’s event.
If you want to participate in this month’s Cyril’s Community Supported Cheese club offering, there are three easy ways to do so.
Option 1: Pledge $10 to attend the cheese club pickup party on Thursday, March 28th at 6:30pm. You’ll get to try the Schlossberger cheese and partake in the festivities of the evening but won’t be taking home a 1-pound chunk of cheese.
Option 2: Pledge $30 for a 1-pound piece of Schlossberger cheese along with attending the pickup party.
Option 3: Pledge $36 and not only do you get 1-pound of this month’s cheese but you can bring a friend to the pickup party.
Davies is using online funding platform Kickstarter so participants can commit to purchasing this month’s cheese. You must make your pledge by Thursday, March 14th and if the needed monthly goal isn’t reached in order to buy the cheese, the cheese club simply doesn’t happen that month and no one is charged.
Cyril’s Community Supported Cheese Club for March:
815 SE Oak, Portland, OR
The party is scheduled for Thursday, March 28th at 6:30pm but cheese lovers have less than two weeks to commit to the Schlossberger cheese. If the pledge goal of $1500 isn't reached, the cheese isn’t purchased, no one is charged and the party is called off.
Make your pledge today so you too can enjoy a unique cheese not readily available here in Portland!